Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas 2011

The Baking: I personally didn’t have the desire to do much baking this year and yet we still managed to have lots of baked goodies and we made some great memories in the kitchen.

IMG_9027 IMG_9023 And let’s just say that Kaylin stepped up to the plate and was so patient with Gaëlle. Because let’s face it, when Gaëlle is in the kitchen the only thing we hear is, “Can I do that?” “Can I help?” Over and over and over again.

IMG_9041 She got to help with the legendary “Pink Stuff”. We like to tease Josh about pretty much the only holiday dish he used to eat until he grew up a bit, but the truth is that we all look forward to it.

 IMG_9066The final product. Maybe it’s not all that impressive but we have fond memories of the family that first served this to us and we can’t have a holiday meal without it.IMG_9065

Kaylin continued her kitchen magic on Christmas Day and for some strange reason, Gaëlle temporarily lost her interest in “helping”.

The Fun: It was such a joy to  have the family together and all in one place. The days leading up to Christmas were busy and we didn’t get to see each other daily, but we did have some laughs when we were together.

IMG_9018 IMG_9028  


Christmas Day Hits: It’s hard to narrow down the day to just a few moments but we had fun with some of our new goodies.

 IMG_9053We start off our morning with stockings and this year we had a guest who provided some hilarity. Love the head scratcher. IMG_9057  We had a few rough moments earlier this month when Peter realized his expectations for Christmas were not going to line up with our family ways. However, we talked them out and today he did great. I was so proud of him and his enthusiasm and his great attitude. IMG_9069 Believe it or not, Josh did not get LEGO for Christmas. This was Peter’s present. However, it seemed just a tad beyond Peter’s abilities and interest and so being the caring loving big brother that he is, Josh sacrificed his time and found himself putting together the big Star Wars LEGO set. Ah, memories.IMG_9076Peter doesn’t spend a lot of time playing video games but he got a couple of new ones and after the LEGO marathon, he just had to settle back for some Mario. IMG_9078

Gaëlle was thrilled with her new craft sets. She obsesses about a few things and one of them is “lip gloss”. She calls it “Lips”, as in “Mom, can I have some lips?” So she was pretty excited to get her own lip gloss making kit.

She also did great today. The excitement was really too much for her at times however she managed to keep it together and also did so well at showing her enthusiasm and pleasure with her gifts. When I put her to bed tonight I praised her for how well she did and she just beamed.

Probably the most loved gift of the day was GUM. Josh gave everybody gum with their presents. Peter was the first one to open a present from Josh. When Gaëlle saw 3 packages of gum she let out a “WOW!” Her face was just stunned. She sat back down and in a few moments she asked for her gift from Josh. Yes, in addition to a hand puppet, there were 3 packages of gum which she promptly opened. By 9:45 she had already eaten 5 pieces. We figure she’ll go through a package a day.

Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

All I want for Christmas is my 2 front teeth

Probably no need to comment on this. Gaëlle lost another tooth this week and is just pure cuteness.
Here's a flashback from the past when Kaylin was the same age, at the same time of year, and missing the same front teeth. So cute.

Potatoe Love

Some people are just so efficient when it comes to all things domestic. Now that I am not getting home until 5:00, I need to be that person. I already do my meal list for the week and I try to get it all ready the night before but I'm not always successful. That's where I need some good ideas and this is one of them. I followed a link to the following post and was inspired by the ideas. I took away lots of ideas, but so far our family's favorite is the double stuffed potatoes. I take a 5 lb bag of potatoes and bake them in the oven. Then I cut the potatoes in half and scoop out the cooked potatoes. Add 1 block of cream cheese, entire package of cooked bacon crumbled, and 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese. Mix together and restuff the potatoes. Wrap each potato in place in freezer bag. Instant meal. Add a salad, fish, leftover meat and we're good to go.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

A great Christmas link about the best toys

I read this post and thought it was so true and perfect for this time of year. I have such fond memories of Kaylin as a little girl and all her creative play. Any time we finished a box of cereal or purchased something that came in a box she would ask, "Can I have that box?" And she would take the box and spend hours in her room creating villages. If there was Styrofoam, she hit the jackpot. But after a while the room would be overtaken by boxes and Robin would be known to come in with garbage bags and then tears would ensue. But that didn't stop her. The requests would continue to come, "Can I have that box?" And the village would be created all over again.

Big happenings

We finally took Peter to have his eyes tested and it turns out, that yes, he needs glasses. So here he is in all his handsomeness. He doesn't seem to mind wearing them and really just needs them for school and TV but he is wearing them all the time. He can tell the difference which I think helps him to wear them.

Gaëlle with a loose tooth is like a girl with a mission saying, "It must come out." She wiggled it so much this week and made her gums bleed several times. Then finally on Friday night she happened to touch it absent mindedly and it just came out. So now she is $1 richer.

And notice the silk cap. She almost never wears a sleep cap altho it would help her hair maintain a style longer. But I don't force it unless she is getting a coconut oil treatment. And Friday night was designated coconut oil night. So I think the cap stayed on the entire night.

We do a few activities for advent. We have an advent wreath with candles and every Sunday we just say a scripture and tell the symbolism of the candle. We also have an advent tree with heart pockets that I fill with candy. Last year we read Jotham's Journey which was a big hit.

This year we are doing a Jesse Tree every night. I downloaded the free resource from Ann Voskamp's blog. It's simple and the kids enjoy it so I'm pleased with this. Every night we read scripture and the kids put one of paper ornaments on the tree. Ann has some great thoughts each day but I tend to summarize those. Simple.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Winter cheer

We had a couple of big events this week. We started things off with the Santa Claus parade. It was just right. It started on time and lasted less than 30 minutes. There wasn't too much candy this year, but that's just fine with me.

It was a nice warm night for the end of November but I still made the kids dress up in snow pants. They didn't see the need for it, but were thankful by the end.

Then on Wednesday we had our first snow storm of the year. The kids spent a bit of time outside playing in the snow while Kaylin and I spent some time outside shoveling.

It's a good thing Kaylin and I started early with the shoveling. The snow became very wet and heavy. But we did it. The first snow always brings out smiles. We'll see if we're still smiling in March.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

We love to go to the waterfront to walk around and play on the nice dangerous sharp anchors. Actually they have torn down the old playground there and are replacing it with a bright shiny orange submarine playset. I thought it would be finished and so Gaëlle and I headed down to see.

It wasn't open to the public yet, so Gaëlle amused herself with all the other fun objects just begging to be climbed on.

Of course there was the huge wave to try and conquer.

She didn't quite make it to the top without the help of her father.

Then there was my camera to play with. So I had my photo taken a few times. Great fun.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Flashback photo

This summer my sister, her 2 kids, and my parents all came to NS for a visit. I don't think I ever uploaded the photos which is too bad, because we had some great times. Anyway, when I first saw this photo I couldn't believe it. My little niece and my daughter are the same height!!! How did that happen? There is a 5 year difference but you would never know it from this photo.

Another photo from the same day where kids are just being kids and having fun playing at the ocean's edge.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Birthday girl

Well, I had a birthday this week. All the kids were able to come over for a family meal and celebration. It was a great time with lots of laughs and just fun being together.

Kaylin made the entire meal and cake for me. Spinach quinoa soup with home made bread and chocolate cake. Yum. Love it.

Kids mimic what they see

I've already mentioned how Gaëlle is consumed with cell phones. We went to the Bell Aliant store and the sales person offered to give her a display phone. It feels and looks real but it doesn't work. This morning she was changing the password to her phone. And she brought her phone over to Robin so he could add her number to his phone.

So he added her cell phone number and her home number. He called her cell phone number and it was "out of order". We told her she must not have been paying her bill or maybe she moved. Then Robin called her home phone and we let her answer. So a conversation ensued.

The other night as Josh was looking something up on his phone, Gaëlle ran to get hers because she had to "check the weather for tomorrow". It's a good reminder to us all that little eyes are watching everything we do.

Cell phones today.

Who knows what tomorrow?

A week late

Peter and Gaëlle were very excited about Halloween. Peter had huge elaborate plans for his costume but his parents wouldn't cooperate. But he's so easy going, he settled for a pirate and I'm pretty sure he still managed to have a great time.

Checking out their loot at the end of their evening. It was a nice night but still just slightly cold. The kids were bundled up and were only out for about 30 minutes but by the time they came back, Gaëlle's hands were frozen. They poured out their stash and had some hot chocolate. By the time they were warmed up it was time for bed to which Gaëlle said, "We aren't going back out?"

No, the way she obsesses about candy, I think she had more than enough.

Our church had a "Trunk or Treat" event in their parking lot. Emily and Kaylin dressed up and drove over to participate. There was a judge looking at all the cars and a prize for the best decorated car. I only had a few things for them to use on the car, but it sounds like next year they will go all out. They had a great time and think it's a perfect event for the family.

Playing catch up

The kids were quite anxious to carve the pumpkins and we didn't bring out the carving tools until the weekend before Halloween.

The big event took place in the middle of hair styling but that didn't stop Gaëlle. She is very intently drawing the face she wants to carve out of her pumpkin.

As you can tell, she is quite proud of her achievements.

Peter did a great job and really took his time. He pretty much did the entire thing on his own. Peter and Gaëlle just love all things crafty and they were both eager to be very detailed on their pumpkin. We managed to keep it simple but I see great elaborate jack-o-lanterns in their future.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Pumpkin shopping

Gaëlle has been excitedly waiting for the day to pick out pumpkins. We finally made a stop and allowed the kids their own choice. As you can see, the large pumpkins were too enticing.

Peter managed to haul the one he wanted out of the bin all by himself.

Gaëlle needed a little help to snag the pumpkin she wanted. Dad was more than willing to go for the big one. You do know who is going to be helping with the carving, don't you? There's going to be a lot of scooping going on.